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Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y ITALY Italy is the home to many of the world’s greatest works of art, architecture and gastronomy, Italy elates, inspires and moves…
Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y ITALY Italy is the home to many of the world’s greatest works of art, architecture and gastronomy, Italy elates, inspires and moves like no other. Our favorite countries, Page 1 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y CULTURAL RICHES The Epicenter of the Roman Empire and birthplace of the Renaissance, this European virtuoso groans under the weight of its cultural cachet: it’s here that you’ll stand in the presence of Michelangelo’s David and Sistine Chapel frescoes, Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and Primavera and Da Vinci’s The last Supper. In fact, Italy has more Unesco World Heritage cultural sites than any other country on Earth. It’s a cultural conundrum as thrilling as it is overwhelming. INIMITABLE STYLE In few places do art and life intermingle so effortlessly. This may be the land of Dante, Titian and Verdi, but it’s also the home of Prada, Massimo Bottura and Renzo Piano. Beauty, style and flair furnish every aspect of daily life, from those immaculately knotted ties and seamless espressos to the flirtatious smiles of striking strangers. The root of Italian psychology is a dedication to living life well. Our favorite countries, Page 2 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y ENDLESS FEASTS It might like a boot, but food-obsessed Italy feels more like a decadently stuffed Christmas stocking. From delicate tagliatelle al ragú to velvety cannoli, every bite can feel like a reve- lation. And while Italy’s culinary soul might prefer simplicity, it’s equally ingenious and so- phisticated. Some of the world’s top fine-dining destinations, from San Pellegrino ‘World’s Best 50’ hot spots to Michelin-starred musts. SPECTACULAR LANDSCAPES The country is one of nature’s masterpieces, with extraordinary natural diversity matched by few. From the North’s icy Alpes and glacial lakes to the South’s fiery craters and turquoise grottoes, this is a place for doing as well as seeing. Not bad for a country not much bigger than Arizona Our favorite countries, Page 3 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y ROME A mix of ruins, awe-inspiring art and vi- brant street life, Italy’s hot-blooded capi- tal is one of the world’s most romantic and charismatic cities. M O N U M E N TA L H I S T O RY Rome’s cityscape is an exhilarating sight. Ancient icons such as the Colosseum, Roman Forum and Pantheon recall the city’s golden age as caput Mundi, while monumental basilicas tell of its history as seat of the Catholic Church. Lording it over the skyline, St Peter’s Basilica towers over the Vatican. Elsewhere, ornate piazzas and showy fountains add a baroque flourish to the city’s captivating streets. A R T I S T I C Our favorite countries, Page 4 TREASURES Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y A RT I S T I C TREASURES ROMAN FEASTING Eating out is one of Rome´s great pleasures and the Throughout history, the city has starred in the great combination of romantic alfresco settings and superlative upheavals of Western art, drawing top artists and in- food is a guarantee of good times. spiring them to push the boundaries of creative achievement. Ancient statues adorn world-class mu- For contemporary fine dining and five-star wine there are seums; Byzantine mosaics and Renaissance fres- any number of refined restaurants, but for a truly Roman coes dazzle in art-rich churches; baroque facades meal head to a boisterous pizzeria or convivial neighbor- flank medieval piazzas. The titans of European art- hood trattoria. sculptures by Michelangelo, paintings by Caravag- To finish off, what can beat a gelato followed by a shot of gio, frescoes by Raphael and fountains by Bernini. world-beating coffee? Our favorite countries, Page 5 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y VENICE Imagine the audacity of building a city of marble palaces on a lagoon – and that was only the start. Our favorite countries, Page 6 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y EPIC GRANDEUR Never was a thoroughfare so aptly named as the Grand Canal, reflecting the glories of centuries of Venetian architecture in the 50 palazzo and six churches lining its banks. At the end of Venice’s signature S- shaped waterway, the palazzo Ducale and Basilica di San Marco. VENETIAN FEASTS Garden islands and lagoon aquaculture yield specialty produce and seafood you won’t find elsewhere – all highlighted in inventive Venetian cuisine, with tantalizing traces of an- cient spice routes. Today such feasts are available in miniature at happy hour, when bars mount lavish spreads of cicheti. Save room and time for a proper sit-sown Venetian meal, with lagoon seafood to match views at canal side bistros and toasts with Veneto’s signa- ture bubbly, prosecco. Our favorite countries, Page 7 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y AN ARTFUL LIFE- STYLE The wake-up call of the gondoliers ‘Ooooeeeee’, a morning spritz in a sunny camp, lunch in a crowded bacaro bar with friends and fuchsia- pink sunsets that have sent centuries of artists mad. DEFYING CONVEN- TION Eyeglasses, platform shoes and uncrossed dresses were all outlandish Venetian fashions that critics sniffed would never be worn by respectable Europeans. Venetians are used to setting trends. On a smaller scale, this unconventional creative streak finds vibrant ex- pression in the showrooms of local artisans. Our favorite countries, Page 8 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y MILAN Milan is the city of the fu- ture, a fast-paced me- tropolis where money talks, creativity is big business and looking good is an art form. Our favorite countries, Page 9 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y CULTURAL LEGACY Ruled by the Caesars, Napoleon, the Austro- Hungarians and Mussolini, Mi- lan has an ancient and fascinating history. After the unification of Italy in 1861, it also became an important industrial and cultural center- a title is still holds today. It may not have the historic attractions of other Italian cities. Prestigious nights at La Scala, an illustrious literary heritage and a vibrant music scene also do much to debunk the city’s workaholic. A MODERN MIRACLE Not only is Milan a treasure trove of 20th- century art, but art deco and ra- tionalist architecture. Today the city leads the way with the largest post- war development in Italy, impressive, sustainable architecture and a futur- istic skyline. The city is also burgeoning into a hi-tech hub, home to start- ups galore. Our favorite countries, Page 10 Alejandra Jaimes October 3, y LIVING BY DESIGN Though Italian design is world renowned, its roots lie in 1930s Milan. Milan is home to all the major design showrooms and an endless round of trade fairs. BOUN APPETITO Milanese cooking is the product of a rich urban culture. Just note the golden hue of its quintessential dishes. Even today Milan continues to push Italy’s culinary boundaries, making sushi and dim sum its own, and holding the highest number of Michelin stars in the country. Our favorite countries, Page 11
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